TD Ameritrade released a survey Wednesday on the differences in financial education and attitudes between generations.
The report noted that Gen Y is "collaborative" when it comes to finding financial information; 60% will ask their friends, relatives and colleagues for information, compared with 46% of Gen X, 43% of boomers and just 31% of matures. It should be no surprise then that one-third of Gen Y respondents turn to social media for news about the economy and financial markets.
The survey found 61% of respondents use television and radio talk shows for information on economic and financial issues. Over 50% use daily newspapers. People born between 1930 and 1945, or matures, were most likely to use daily newspapers, while those born between 1965 and 1989, which includes Gen X and Gen Y, were most likely to use news websites. Almost two-thirds of Gen Y respondents say they use news websites, and 52% of Gen X respondents do.
Boomers are most likely to use professional advisors to get news, but older generations are similarly dependent on advisors. Thirty-eight percent of boomers, 37% of matures and 32% of Gen X use their advisor to get news about the economy and financial markets, but just 21% of Gen Y does.
There's a gap, however, in where respondents go for information and how much they trust those sources. While 38% of boomers go to their advisor for information, just 22% reported that they trust their advisor. Gen X didn't indicate trust in any one source; rather, 17% noted traditional media, investment advisors and news-oriented websites each as trustworthy sources.
While 21% of Gen Y respondents said they trust their friends or talk show hosts, just 10% say they trust professional advisors as a source of news.
Most respondents (81%) say they were exposed to money management principles before they turned 20, and almost 80% of respondents feel this was appropriate. Younger generations are learning to save and spend wisely at younger ages. Forty-one percent of matures say they learned financial principles in their teens, compared with 69% of Gen Y.
Parents were unsurprisingly the most frequently cited source of financial education, but 74% of respondents said they felt schools should take more responsibility. Compared with Gen X and Gen Y, matures are twice as likely to think that employers should play a role in financial education.